Samoan Language Week took place from Sunday 27 May to Saturday 2 June. This year’s theme was “O le Vāfealoa’i”- “Strong and Respectful Relationships”.
Little Kiwis is a multi-cultural early childhood education provider, we promote and emphasize the importance in recognizing and respecting different ethnicities. Some of our teachers and children are from the beautiful Island of Samoa, and children at Little Kiwis have been happily learning numbers and saying simple greetings in Samoan Language. Te Whāriki builds on what the children bring to their learning from their socio-cultural background. Thus it is important for us to help make links between everyday activities, special events of whānau, local communities and cultures, and their learning in the centre setting.
During this celebration week, our teaching staff continued to promote the teaching and learning of the Samoan Language by teaching children words and phrases commonly used in everyday environment and singing Samoan songs about the five senses and body parts. We also used this learning context to further extend children’s learning in Sign Language by teaching them signing Bible verses in Samoan Language. In doing so, we introduced materials and opportunities that would provoke our children to further explore their current interest in Sign Language.
To help our children in maintaining the use of the Samoan Language and growing in recognition of Samoan culture, we taught them the significant dates in Samoa (such as the meaning of the Flag day), how to cook traditional cuisine, and also a popular Samoan dance to perform for the parents. In this way, children’s learning and development has been fostered as the well-being of their family and community is supported and respected.